Sheriff Paul Babeu is America’s 2011 “Sheriff of the Year,” as selected by his colleagues in the National Sheriff’s Association. He has served for two years as the President of the Arizona Sheriff’s Association and is currently serving as their Vice President. As Sheriff, he proudly leads an office of 600 full time employees and 350+ volunteers.
Sheriff Babeu defeated an incumbent to win his first landslide election in 2008, becoming the first Republican elected since the 1800’s.
He won re-election in 2012 over six challengers, gathering more votes than any successful candidate for local, county state or federal office in Pinal County.
Immediately upon taking office, Sheriff Babeu launched a full reorganization. While cutting his own budget, he replaced the entire command leadership,
implemented high employee standards, improved training, reduced emergency response times (by nearly 50%) and has aggressively sought and been awarded over 29 million in grants and other supplemental funding. He instantly honored a campaign promise to remove speed cameras from the county, insisting that he ran for Sheriff to protect the public-not to be the tax collector for the state.
Pinal County is one of the top pass through counties in America for drug and human smuggling, ground zero in the fallout over America’s unsecured Southern border.
Pinal County contains an estimated 100 drug cartel cells and listening posts/observation posts, used to facilitate the illegal transportation of people and narcotics into the United States.
There have been cartel murders on residential streets, cold blooded executions, and attacks on law enforcement.
Sheriff Babeu and his Deputies enforce ALL of the laws and have brought a heavy hand of enforcement against the Mexican drug cartels. PCSO led a multi-agency operation which scored the largest drug bust
in Arizona history, smashing the Sinaloa Cartel’s $2 to $3 billion dollar drug smuggling operation, arresting 76 cartel members, seizing 108 weapons including scoped rifles, AK-47’s and two guns from “Operation Fast and Furious.”
Last year, his deputies arrested and prosecuted twenty-one Mexican drug cartel members who were working as scouts on the hilltops overlooking some of the most active drug and human smuggling corridors in America.
The scouts were deployed on the hilltops for nearly a month at a time working as spotters for the guides smuggling drugs and humans into the United States. The scouts communicated with the guides and members of the Mexican Drug Cartels to let them know when law enforcement officers were in the area.
They communicated by using cell phones and digitally encrypted radios, using portable solar panels to recharge their electronics. Each of the twenty-one Mexican drug cartel scouts were prosecuted and sent to prison for two and a half years. Once released, they will be deported back to Mexico.
Sheriff Babeu has emerged as a national leader on border security, and an outspoken critic of the Federal government’s failure to fulfill their most solemn obligation-to keep us safe. Sheriff Babeu has testified several times before members of the United States Congress and has provided presentations to audiences across the Country regarding border security.
He serves as a Board Member for the National Sheriff’s Association and as the spokesperson for the Western States Sheriff’s Association on all issues related to border security.
Sheriff Babeu has also been fearless in his pursuit of those who abuse the public trust.
This includes busting a drug smuggling and identify theft ring run from the County Recorder’s
Office and arresting Court personnel for soliciting bribes to fix cases.
Most notably, Sheriff Babeu was asked by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to investigate allegations of wrongdoing in his own department. This detailed search led to the termination of three top ranked deputies.
Sheriff Babeu is committed to honest, open, and transparent government.
Sheriff Babeu served for over 20 years in the Army National Guard, entering as a Private/E-2 and retiring with the rank of Major. During his tenure he served a tour in Iraq and spent 16 months deployed in Arizona as a Commander with Operation Jump Start (OJS), Southwest Border Mission. Major Babeu commanded over 700 men and women on the United States border with Mexico, reducing illegal entries by 94%.
Sheriff Babeu started his law enforcement career as a Police Officer for the City of Chandler, AZ. He graduated from the Arizona Law Enforcement Academy as the #1 overall police recruit and voted by his fellow officers as the exemplary officer. Sheriff Babeu has been awarded two Life Saving Medals in the performance of his duties as a Patrolman.
Sheriff Babeu was selected by his peers to represent them as head of the Chandler Law Enforcement Association, and on the board of directors for the Arizona Police Association. The President of the Arizona Sheriff’s Association, he currently serves on the National Sheriffs’ Association Board of Directors and is active with numerous military, civic and community groups within Pinal County and across the state.
Sheriff Babeu’s education includes an Associate’s Degree in Law Enforcement,
Bachelor’s Degree in History/Political Science and a Master of Public Administration.
He also is a graduate of the Executive Leadership Training Program at Harvard University.